another new beginning

Looking at my blog reel it's clear that a lot of us are feeling reflective as we start heading into 2014. While I might be tempted to measure this year by looking at the number of good things vs the bad, ultimately each year is going to be the same. Life doesn't provide quick fixes for the hard stuff - we each just have to do what we can to keep moving forward. And strange as it sounds, my wardrobe is one way I do that. I get a very definite pep to my step when I wear something that makes me feel beautiful; no harm, no foul. Going into 2014 I hope to continue that, and to ensure that my closet is filled with the kind of versatile but unique pieces that make me happy. Which is how I feel about the outfits I've chosen to feature below in my own Top 10 of 2013 (which are in no particular order).

I hope all of you have a fantastic New Year celebration, however big or small, and I can't wait to meet back up with everyone in 2014!

What to Wear: for Christmas Dinner

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I might be a few link ups behind on Nicole's "What to Wear" series, but Christmas dinner is definitely one I can do. Or maybe we'll call it Christmas snacks because I'm not sure I'd eat a whole dinner in highwaisted pants, lol.

Regardless, these pieces bring together all the colors of Christmas in a relaxed casual getup that even in four inch heels I'm pretty sure I could walk around town in. Check out the rest of the great dinner outfits here once the link page is up and running!

Turtleneck: ASOS ~ Flannel: J.Crew Factory ~ Pants: Gap (also worn here)~ Shoes: Nine West ~ Clutch: Shiraleah (also worn here)

and to all a good night

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I hope all of you are spending the day doing whatever makes you happy (mine is going to include lots of food and time with friends). Happy Holidays!


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Even though I bought this dress last year I'd have to say that this is the first time I've styled it as a day dress. As much as I love the sequins I never really felt like they fit in my wardrobe outside evening events. But after a year of reading/seeing Wendy, Blair, and Jean make them work I decided that the end of 2013 was perfect for a bit of sparkle :).

Dress: J.Crew ~ Top: The Limited ~ Bag: H&M ~ Tights: Target ~ Shoes: Nine West (thrifted) ~ Watch: Ebay

black and white

Another check in the 'leather for day' column, and I think I even pull off work appropriate with this one!

Peplum Top: JC Penny (also worn here) ~ Shirt: The Limited ~ Skirt: Dorothy Perkins ~ Stockings: Nordstrom ~ Shoes: Nine West ~ Watch: Ebay

one and done

I know I'm not one to complain about the Winter season, in fact I usually like it since it means I don't have to sweat during my whole morning commute, but sometimes DC is just so cold. So cold. Cold enough that taking outfit pictures on the roof of my office building feels like I'm standing in the arctic tundra.

Top: J.Crew ~ Skirt: ASOS (also worn here) ~ Tights: Target ~ Shoes: Nine West ~ Bag: H&M ~ Necklace: Gift

life updates

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Sorry it's been so quiet around the blog this week - the holidays are my favorite time of year and unsurprisingly that results in a lot of stuff to do in and around DC!

(left to right)
1) Tacky Sweater Party 2) Fantastic sweater cookies
3) The Host & I in our matching leggings 4) Friends at the Botanic Gardens
5) Monument decorations at the Botanic Gardens 6) Amazing lights & ornaments (also at the BG)
7) Snowed in necessities 8) My new couch! (thanks for nothing Sears >.<)

A Holiday in Two Parts - The Limited Belted Ponte Skater Dress

So as a continuation of last Monday's post, today I'm showing you this beautiful cobalt dress from The Limited. With the long sleeves and just above the knee length it's appropriate for work and life - or for playing around on a carousel!

Necklace: Forever21 ~ Belt: J.Crew ~ Tights: Target ~ Shoes: Nine West

I hope you guys are as happy for it to be December as I am. Christmas is my favorite holiday and I wish every one of you a season filled with love, laughter, and time with friends. 

red & blue

So, yes, I'm here again with another post featuring my H&M bag but maybe I can get a pass on this one? I'm having a lot of fun using it as my pop of color, especially in outfits like these where the predominant theme is dark.

Cape: Urban Outfitters (also worn here) ~ Top: J.Crew ~ Jeans: The Limited ~ Boots: Bandolino ~ Purse: H&M

the hunt

Being the first day of December, I thought Sunday was the perfect time to go Christmas tree hunting. There are a few different vendors at Eastern Market and walking around, smelling all that pine, was amazing.

The outfit was possibly the most preppy I've been so far this season, but I just bought this H&M bag on Black Friday ($24.95) and I couldn't wait to use it!

Blazer: J.Crew (also worn here) ~ Sweater: Ann Taylor Factory ~ Top: Gap ~ Jeans: The Limited ~ Purse: H&M ~ Boots: Bandolino ~ Hat: Torrid (super old)

Anyone want a sneak peek of the tree I picked?
Yay for Charlie Brown ornaments!

A Holiday in Two Parts - The ASOS Skater Dress

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So as a little gift to myself and kind of an experiment for holiday cards, I approached my friend Angela Kleis about taking some pictures in DC. She did an amazing job, working with the different natural locations around the National Mall, and she even gave me posing feedback when I needed it (which I definitely did - modeling is hard guys! Even when it's pretend!).

Since the two outfits I chose are still available and maybe even on sale, I figured why not show you guys some great holiday party options. First up is this ASOS Skater Dress which is incredibly festive with the pleather panels but shorter than I expected, especially with heels.

Stockings: Nordstrom ~ Shoes: Nine West (thrifted)


In celebration of the holiday I spent yesterday with friends, and it was a day filled with fun, laughter, and a ridiculous amount of food. I'm incredibly lucky in the friends-turned-family I have in DC and Thanksgiving this year was a classic example of why. Who else brings two entire pies AND a tray of frosted brownies to share amongst three people!?

There may have also been some (a lot) of time spent in the carrot onesie dancing to this song

You see that plate? I made all that. #proud

make it work

I'm trying to push myself into new and different layers this season and this dress is a prime example. Would I have paired it with this turtleneck last year? Probably not, but Khatu and Cee have demonstrated some beautiful examples of how to turn Summer dresses cooler weather appropriate and I hope I do them justice.

Turtleneck: J.Crew ~ Dress: ECI New York (also worn here) ~ Jacket: Old Navy ~ Tights: Target ~ Shoes: Nine West (thrifted)

lady in pink

99% of the time H&M clothing won't have room for all my ribs, but somehow that extra 1% always manages to include pieces that turn into wardrobe staples. And I know what you're saying, how is a hot pink blazer a wardrobe staple, but I've worn this with a variety of outfits and loved it every time.

Blazer: H&M (also worn here and  here) ~ Top: Lucky Brand (Marshall's) ~ Skirt: Leith (Nordstrom) ~ Shoes: Nine West ~ Watch: Michael Kors

it's all about the giraffe

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I'm not sure I'm show casing either of these new items here in their best light but I love really love them so bear with me ok? This jacket just called to me, in spite of the higher price tag (it was clearance on clearance because hey - Wilson's Leather - but that doesn't mean it was cheap) and the moto shape with large lapel has me wanting to wear this everyday.

The shoes are the culmination (at least for now) of my desire for riding boots. Specifically black ones with brown tops that fit a wide calf. I wouldn't say they were as comfortable as the Bandolino name would suggest but I traipsed around NJ in them for days after they arrived and they seem to be holding up pretty well. For under $100 (I used a coupon) they'll work for me until I find an even more perfect replacement.

Jacket: Marc New York/Andrew Marc (Wilson's Leather) ~ Sweater: Banana Republic ~ Top: Gap (also worn here) ~ Jeans: The Limited ~ Boots: Bandolino

What to Wear: Mixing Patterns

Sorry for completely forgetting about last week's What to Wear post! I didn't mean to space out but since Nicole already posted her link up I thought that perhaps late would be better than never.

Pattern mixing is probably one of my favorite things to do (see here, here, or here) and while I tend to go for the obvious pairings today I thought I'd showcase a more subtle mix.

The Tommy Hilfiger book dress goes surprisingly well with this Banana Republic skirt and the overall effect is dressy but still casual (especially if you pair it with flats the way I do on my commute). Hope this helps those of you trying out new combinations of old wardrobe staples!

Dress (worn as shirt): Tommy Hilfiger (also worn here) ~ Skirt: Banana Republic ~ Shoes: Nine West ~ Watch: Michael Kors

rolling out the coats

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Note to self: don't wear bulky layers under a form fitting skater jacket.

Besides that small snafu I still love this jacket and can't wait to wear it more often. It's super warm (ie in the future I'm only going to be putting one layer underneath) and the asymmetrical swing hemline is fun and feminine. I won't say I truly needed another jacket (I'm not sure I'll ever say that) but a sale from ASOS is as good a reason as any!

Coat: ASOS (similar in black) ~ Pants: GAP Factory ~ Boots: Unknown (gift)

garden party

As long as Fall in DC continues to bounce between 45 and 65 degrees I'm going to continue wearing coats covered in flowers with 3/4 length sleeves.

Jacket: ECI New York (also worn here) ~ Top: The Limited ~ Skirt: H&M (thrifted) ~ Shoes: Nine West (thrifted) ~ Bag: Kate Spade ~ Watch: Michael Kors ~ Bracelet: Eastern Market

maybe mint

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I'm not sure my EOTD is looking quite as mint as this inspiration look by Madam Noire but I still love the color combination!

Products Used:
~~NYX Jumbo Pencil in Milk
~~Ebay 120 Palette - mint/teal eyeshadows, white eyeshadow, brown eyeshadow
~~MAC Soft Brown eyeshadow
~~MAC Embark eyeshadow
~~elf Cream Eyeliner in coffee
~~Stila smudge stick waterproof eye liner in damsel
~~Benefit "They're Real" mascara

Geek of the Week #19

1. Litographs. What is a litograph you ask? "Litographs create art from the books you've read and loved" and this website has a huge and fantastic selection of items to wear, carry, or put up in your house.

 The Secret Garden shirt, $34

2. Dr. Who leggings. Because these exist and everyone needs a pair to NOT WEAR LIKE PANTS.

 Geeky U, $64.82

3. Tardis Footie Pajamas. Yes they exist and yes you need to have them.

 Think Geek, $39

4. A Conversation With Myself About Buying a Dress. A friend sent this article to me and it is a freakishly accurate depiction of how I walk into Macy's wanting nothing and come out with everything.

Sorry that Geek of the Week is a little shorter than usual today but I really enjoyed the stuff that made it on here! I do have one burning question though: has anyone seen Ender's Game? Or planning to see Thor 2 this weekend? Tell me your movie viewing thoughts and desires!